Chicago Tribune cartoon of CTU President Karen Lewis.
This is in response to “My challenge to Karen Lewis” (Perspective, April 26), by Tanya Saunders-Wolffe, a counselor at Jesse Owens Community Academy on the Far South Side. Why is the Chicago Tribune newspaper a venue for proselytizing Saunders-Wolffe’s contention for the leadership of the Chicago Teachers Union? Do other unions try to convince the public of their need for a change in leadership, and to whom does a newspaper give such an airing? Why should the public, most of whom do not belong to my union, be involved in our election — unless Saunders-Wolffe and the Coalition to Save Our Union are getting support through publishing their platform and grievances through her advertisement?
The Coalition to Save Our Union got major media play months ago as Debbie Lynch introduced the opposition to the current leadership. Karen Lewis launched her campaign in public recently. Barely a major outlet noticed.
Saunders-Wolffe has the right to opine as a citizen about any issue she wishes. The Tribune publishes what it wants. I call into question why the interests that run the paper have published her appeal but refuse to research the claims of representatives of the Coalition to Save Our Union to give a “fair and balanced” report to its patrons.
Both of my sisters-in-the-union, Lewis and Saunders-Wolffe, will have a more appropriate place to campaign for leadership: among our other union members. Campaigning can be grueling and has been known to be dirty. Does the Chicago Tribune have to contribute to this?
— Kimberly Bowsky, member, Chicago Teachers Union
I was disappointed to open the Tribune and read the opinion piece “My challenge to Karen Lewis.”
I am a math teacher in the Englewood neighborhood, and your readers should know that Lewis and the rest of the Chicago Teachers Union officers have the full support of the vast majority of the teachers and staff who work in the Chicago Public Schools. Our union is active, united and democratic, and I am proud to be a part of it.
I’m proud to have a union president who has the intellect and political skills to battle the mayor.
The teachers, parents and students of Chicago desperately need people like Lewis to lead us as we fight to save our schools and communities.
— Drew Heiserman, teacher, Englewood High School, Chicago